This course was developed in collaboration with the Little Kids Rock organization. Learn more about their mission of bringing relevant music education to all students by visiting their website littlekidsrock.org.
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Passion, creativity and innovation are the hallmarks of acclaimed ukulelist and singer Rachel Haymer’s artistry. Lauded for her original performances, daring interpretations and compelling stage presence, she has been praised for her work on stage and in the recording studio. Rachel’s combination of dazzling artistry, lyrical songwriting acumen and engaging personality have been fostered from an early age. Rachel was raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, and studied with renowned pedagogues such as Melveen Leed and Martile Rowland, Classical Singer Magazine’s 2006 Teacher of the Year. As a performing and recording artist for over two decades, Rachel has collaborated with noted Hawaiian virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro, and has soloed at renowned venues such as the Vocal Arts Symposium at the Colorado Opera Theatre of the Rockies and Ala Moana Centerstage in Honolulu. Upon arriving in New York, she began appearing at Eldercare homes in the tristate area, playing at the Hebrew Home of Riverdale, and other memory care facilities across the tristate area and mastering pop hits from all time periods on her ukulele, with her versatile voice to become the solo act of the Ukulele Time Machine. In 2018 Rachel and the Ukulele Time Machine became a recipient of the coveted Music Under NY lifetime permit. This rare honor is awarded to only 5% of applicants yearly. The Ukulele Time Machine can be seen in such places as Grand Central, Times Square, Fulton St or Rockafeller Center, bringing joy to the commuters of NYC and delighting the tourists from around the world. A creative and innovative presence on the recording scene, Rachel has released two albums reflecting the impressive breadth of her repertoire: The World Through Rosie Colored Glasses and Island Girl Reflections. The latter album showcases Rachel’s prolific songwriting talents, featuring nine original songs including Moon on the Water and Sunrise in the City. Her musical influences include greats such as Joni Mitchell, Bob Marley, and Carole King. Rachel is currently working on releasing her third album, as the lead singer and composer of ManaTones Band, which features world-influenced reggae originals composed through live improvisation. Having served as a musical artist for Tkiya, a New York City musical initiative that helps children find their unique connection with Jewish culture, Rachel now adds the title of music ambassador to her career. Through this initiative, Rachel has performed at some of the most renowned synagogues in New York City, including Park Avenue Synagogue, Romemu on the Upper West Side, and Temple Emanu-El. Her barrier-breaking attitude towards ukulele music and her commitment to sharing her experiences with a global community have made her a fan favorite.